Tuesday, April 22, 2008
Thursday, April 17, 2008
This is the project I've been working on for the last two weeks. After being unhappy with my initial version, I was reluctant to start over after so much hard work. But I'm glad I did, because this version was much more successful in my opinion. If you'd like to inquire about prints, you can in the comment section of this post, or by contacting me in my etsy shop at http://www.trublue.etsy.com/ Generally, prints in my shop are priced as follows:
I can also do special orders prints on canvas or watercolor paper. Pricing for this extra service depends on each individual order.
Wednesday, April 16, 2008
Sunday, April 13, 2008
Friday, April 11, 2008
When I see things like that, it makes me wonder what the seller was thinking. I figure it can only be one of two things: either they don't know any eco-friendly was to package items, or they do, but just don't care. While I can't help with the latter, I can certain provide people with a few tips on how to wrap and package items effectively, while minimizing its impact on the earth. Here are some tips for a greener way to wrap and send your delicates.
1. Get Creative With Your Wrapping Paper:
- I found that recycled brown paper makes a very simple and beautiful wrapping paper. It is especially beautiful if you finish with a nice silk ribbon (the brown really offsets the colors) or some sort of natural touch, such as a sea shell or some small flowers. You know that ever-growing collection of brown paper grocery bags that you hate to throw out, but never seem to have a use for? Now you can finally put them to good use, by using their reverse side (the side without the print).
- Newspaper is a great alternative to informal wrapping jobs. However, if you need something a little fancier, use pages of book print. Now before you go cutting up perfectly good books, I suggest finding ones at thrift stores or yard sales that already have some damage to them. I was able to find several old books that had been in a flood and had severe water damage. While many of the pages were ruined, a great deal of them were perfectly intact and salvageable. You can leave the book print white, or give it a quick antique look by soaking the page in tea or coffee, then drying them under a heavy item (this prevents the paper from wrinkling as it dries).
2. Lose the Styrofoam Packing Peanuts!
Try these ideas instead:
- Use the cast offs from your paper shredder as filler to your packages.
- Use your left over plastic grocery bags to pack delicate items in.
- Get creative with egg cartons! They are great for protecting a large array of items.
- Save and boxes or bubble envelopes that you receive in the mail and re-use them
- Take advantage of Cornstarch Packing peanuts. They are truly the best. They are made of 100% cornstarch, so they are edible (although I wouldn't recommend it). They dissolve completely in water and leave no toxic waste behind. These packing peanuts were originally created with the intention of being a breakfast cereal, but because of it's poor taste, it was re-purposed as a packing material. You can buy these from almost any moving company, or on the web. For a recipe and directions on how to make your own cornstarch packing peanuts, click here.
3. A Few Last Things to Remember:
- Ship early to avoid having to ship by air. Energy costs for sending a package for next day delivery are four times higher than the cost of ground shipping. So try to use ground shipping whenever possible.
- Make sure you use enough material to protect and secure your item, but don't go overboard. Use only what you need.
Now your on your way to greener packaging! Keep up the good work, and thank you for your interest in staying green.
Tuesday, April 8, 2008
Today's featured artist is Unconventionalida. I saw her work and was instantly charmed by her unique style and unforgetable characters. There is a sweetness and warmth to each of her paintings, along with a touch of meloncholy. Unconventionalida sells both originals and prints, with a price range to fit any budget. All of her paintings are done on recycled wood.
Here's what she says about her work:
"I whole heartedly LOVE every character that comes out of my pen. Everything is a magnificent choice for me..the type of wood I will use, the grain, a male or female, old or young...The wood that I use is "rescued" from a cabinet shop in the Bitterroot Mountains.*I can't bear to see lovely wood burned just because it isn't large enough*"
The Queer Little House on the Hill
You can visit her shop at http://www.unconventionalida.etsy.com/
Sunday, April 6, 2008
"Given" - by David Wallace
Thursday, April 3, 2008
Todays featured artist is Infusion, who creates her work from beautiful recycled, natural fabrics. Using such materials as organic hemp, linen, cotton, silk, wool and kapok, Infusion's pieces not only look and feel great, they also come with peace of mind. And with prices compareable to that of traditional fabrics, you can't go wrong.
Here's what she has to say:
"Here at infusion, we are all about Life. There is a new focus needed. Let's work toward sustaining Life. Infusion products are made with reclaimed, recycled, organic and sustainable fibers and fabrics. We love to emphasize what is natural, reduce the toxic load, and lighten our footstep on the earth..."
You can visit her shop at http://www.infusion.etsy.com/
Hemp Tote - Made from 100% Organic Romanian Hemp
Herbal Infusion Pillows - made of reclaimed raw silk, and organic hemp. Filled with Sage and Lavendar.
Tuesday, April 1, 2008
Monday, March 31, 2008
Sunday, March 30, 2008
Thursday, March 27, 2008
Linda Raynsford made this sculpture, titled "Link," out of discarded painted metal, tool boxes, cabinets, and car parts.
Photo by Bob Easton
This entire gown is made out of plastic bags!!! Artist Jayne Ottesen used knitted, ironed and sewn plastic grocery bags to create this gown.
Wednesday, March 26, 2008
I instantly fell in love with this Just My Type Necklace by Tilly Boom $27.99
I was just looking at a pair of these in a thrift store. Perfect for adding 50's flare to your kitchen. Retro Napkin Holder, $11.99 each.
Music Lover Pillow Cases $24.99
Monday, March 24, 2008
Friday, March 21, 2008
This is a fun, easy project using an old serving tray, some paint and some images. For this project I used old wine / liquor labels, but you can use anything from old fruit labels, poster prints or photos.
Start with a plain serving tray. You can pick one up at a thrift store, flea market or yard sale (you can also find new ones for cheap at your local arts and craft store).
Step 1 - Paint the tray
If your serving tray has old paint on it, it can work for or against you. If the old paint is in bad shape, or just ugly, simply give it a quick sanding and a nice fresh layer of paint. If the paint is in decent enough shape, you can add a top coat of new paint (your color choice) over it, then distress it with sand paper so the old paint is showing through. It's especially helpful to do this on the corners and edges where the piece would naturally wear down sooner.
Step 2 - Getting your labels ready
Once you have the background color, you will need to add old wine / liquor labels. You can get these from your own collection, or by printing them off the web (I've added a link to a nice source for these at the bottom of this post). If you labels / images are too white and 'new' looking, you can give them a nice aged yellowed look by dipping them in soy sauce. This is a very effective staining method I stumbled across a while ago. But in this case less is more. A simple dip to coat both sides is good, no more is needed. Do not soak the image, because it will become dingy brown and just look dirty. When the labels are dry, they are ready for attatching.
Step 3 - Attatch your labels
To attatch your labels or images, simply use "Modge Pogde" (again, available at any craft store). Coat the backs of the images and attatch them to the tray, making sure you get all the air bubbles out. Then coat the top of the images of few times to make sure they are permanently affixed to the tray. Let dry. Serve some nice snacks or refreshments on your new tray and impress your guests with your creativity!
The following website has a great collection of printable vintage images!
Tuesday, March 18, 2008
There are so many jewelry sellers on Etsy right now, I felt discouraged from making any. But then I decided it didn't matter. I was making it because it was fun, not because it mattered whether it sold or not. It just so happened that I had today off. So I sat down, spread my supplies out and did some serious jewelry making! I have to say, it was a blast. I'll put them up in the shop and see how they do, but I'm not too worried about it. I had a great time and that's all that matters. I've also been experimenting in metal work. I made a really cool sterling silver fork ring today.
Antique fork ring
Monday, March 17, 2008
Sunday, March 16, 2008
Saturday, March 15, 2008
Wednesday, March 12, 2008
2. Use stick ons. This fabulous 10-minute embellishment is as easy as peel and stick. You can use just about any self-adhesive sticker, but we recommend these repositionable vinyl-coated die-cut ones from wallies.com ($12 for two sheets) to decorate the outside or inside of a shade.
3. Dress up the inside. A hint of color and pattern is an eye-catching touch on the inside of a shade, especially for hanging lamps. Make a pattern by tracing the shape of your lampshade onto paper, allowing enough to overlap ends. Cut fabric using the pattern, coat the wrong side with spray adhesive, and carefully adhere the fabric to the inside of the shade. If you have difficulty controlling the fabric as you work, first back it with paper to stiffen it, then use adhesive to attach the paper side to the shade. Glue bias tape along the top and bottom edges to give the lining a finished look.
4.Lovely Doodle Designs
To create this fun shade, start at the seam with a black opaque paint marker, draw evenly spaced vertical lines for different numbers and sizes of circles. Every fifth row draw a series of single circles; connect the circles with loose, squiggly lines. Then apply the lighter color paint first, let dry. Next, paint the darker circles.
5. Wrap It with Ribbon
Ribbon wrapped around a plain paper shade creates the look of pleated silk. To keep this project affordable, we hit the clearance bin and found four 8-yard ribbon spools for $2.45 each. Use fabric tape to secure a ribbon end (and subsequent ends) to the inside of the shade. Wind ribbon around the shade, overlapping more at the top than at the bottom if using a tapered shade.
Sunday, March 9, 2008
You can find today's featured blog at: